Michael Jackson’s song Billie Jean has been voted the greatest dance record of all time by BBC Radio 2 listeners.
Written by Jackson, and co-produced by Quincy Jones, the track won two
Grammy awards and went to the top of the UK charts in 1983.
Donna Summer’s I Feel Love, which topped the UK charts in 1977, took second place in the music poll.
In third place was soul legend James Brown with Get Up (I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine.
Rhythim Is Rhythim’s 1987 house track Strings Of Life featured at at
number four, followed by Alison Limerick’s Where Love Lives.
The poll, revealed in a three-part series presented by Zoe Ball, was part of a Radio 2 dance music season.
TOP 10 DANCE RECORDS
1. Billie Jean
– Michael Jackson (1983)
2. I Feel Love
– Donna Summer (1977)
3. Get Up (I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine
– James Brown (1970)
4. Strings Of Life
– Rhythim Is Rhythim (1987)
5. Where Love Lives
– Alison Limerick (1994)
6. Keep On Movin’
– Soul II Soul (1989)
7. Can You Feel It
– Fingers Inc. (1988)
8. Big Fun
-Inner City (1988)
9. Theme From S’Express
– S’Express (1988)
10. Key To My Happiness
– The Charades (1966)
"I’m delighted that Billie Jean has been voted the greatest dance record ever made," said Ball.
"This is Jackson at his best. This track is way up there for me –
Jacko’s rendition of it at the Motown 25th anniversary show has got to
be one of the great live performances of all time.
"The bassline is awesome, the production is killer. It’s just perfect."
The beginning of Jackson’s Billie Jean is instantly recognisable because of the first few drum beats in the introduction.
Sound engineer Bruce Swedien said Jackson asked for the song to
have "the greatest sonic personality that you can possibly put on a
track – starting with the drums".
A panel of music experts, including DJs Trevor Nelson and Danny
Rampling, drew up a shortlist of 20 records, which were then voted for
by listeners online.
The songs, dated from 1966 to 2001, were selected for their "musical merit, and importance in the narrative of UK dance music".